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Whales, Whaling, and Ocean Ecosystems$
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James Estes

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780520248847

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520248847.001.0001

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Changes in Marine Mammal Biomass in the Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands Region before and after the Period of Commercial Whaling

Changes in Marine Mammal Biomass in the Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands Region before and after the Period of Commercial Whaling

Chapter:
(p.116) Ten Changes in Marine Mammal Biomass in the Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands Region before and after the Period of Commercial Whaling
Source:
Whales, Whaling, and Ocean Ecosystems
Author(s):

BETE PFISTER

DOUGLAS P. DEMASTER

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520248847.003.0010

A basic understanding of pre-commercial harvest and current abundance of marine mammals is critical before trophic effects can be evaluated. This chapter provides such a foundation to facilitate further evaluation of the nature and magnitude of the impacts of commercial whaling on the North Pacific ecosystem. It considers two factors when addressing this question. First, it is necessary to account for seasonal changes in biomass. Second, some species of marine mammals have age- or sex-specific migratory patterns that must also be accounted for when evaluating the effects of commercial whaling on the marine mammal community in the North Pacific. This chapter documents the overall change in marine mammal biomass of one ecosystem, the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands region, from the onset of commercial harvesting of large whales and pinnipeds to the present.

Keywords:   pre-commercial harvest, marine animals, North Pacific ecosystem, biomass, migratory patterns

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